Softball hosts Alcorn St. in Wednesday twin bill

GO CARDINALS Lamar coach Holly Bruder enters Wednesday with 299 career wins.
GO CARDINALS
Lamar coach Holly Bruder enters Wednesday with 299 career wins.
GO CARDINALS

April 8, 2014

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BEAUMONT, Texas - The Lamar Lady Cardinals wrap up their five-game homestand when they host Alcorn State in a non-conference softball doubleheader at 3 p.m. Wednesday at Ford Park.

Lamar (15-15) comes in on a three-game winning streak thanks to a weekend sweep of Houston Baptist in a Southland Conference series, putting the Lady Cardinals in sole possession of second place in the conference.

The Lady Cardinals are 8-1 at home this season and 24-7 all-time at Ford Park since reviving the program last season. Wednesday's twin bill marks the first non-conference home games for the Lady Cardinals this season.

"We love playing at home," Lamar coach Holly Bruder said. "Our record shows that. I was very impressed with the way we played this weekend. We have to keep that up."

Bruder is on the verge of a milestone, needing one win for the 300th victory in her coaching career. Bruder, who coached at Denison and Morehead State before coming to Lamar, is 299-251 all-time.

"Getting win 300 would be special," Bruder said. "It shows that hard work pays off. But I couldn't have done it without all of the players who took a chance on me. Their effort and determination allowed us to have success."

This is the first-ever meeting between Lamar and Alcorn State. The Lady Braves, a member of the Southwestern Athletic Conference, are 5-24 on the season.

Jessie Gresley leads Alcorn State with a .321 batting average. As a team, the Lady Braves are hitting .247. Alcorn State is dangerous on the bases, with 42 stolen bases in 57 attempts.

Right-hander Jazmin Castillo (3-13, 10.01) leads Alcorn State in wins and ERA.

Bruder isn't taking Alcorn State lightly, despite the fact it has struggled this season.

"We've never done well in midweek non-conference games," Bruder said.  "We have a tendency of playing down to the level of the competition. We have to focus on getting better and getting ready for our conference games."

Lamar enters the doubleheader with a .292 batting average. The Lady Cardinals lead the Southland Conference with a .475 slugging percentage and are tied for the SLC lead with a .376 on-base percentage.

Casey Cromwell leads Lamar with a .350 batting average, one point ahead of Beverly Corry's .349. Cromwell, Corry and Tina Schulz have hit six home runs apiece for the Lady Cardinals.

Schulz (7-8, 3.67) leads Lamar in wins and ERA.

Wednesday's doubleheader is Youth Day, with all area youth softball players receiving free admission when wearing their team jersey. Tickets are available online, or by calling (409) 880-1715. Tickets are available at Ford Park on a cash-only basis one hour prior to first pitch.

Following Wednesday's game, Lamar travels to Abilene Christian for a three-game conference series. The teams meet in a doubleheader at 2 p.m. Saturday and in a single game at 1 p.m. Sunday. Saturday's doubleheader will air live at www.LamarCardinals.com.

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